Brasserie Mon Chou Chou
A formerly jinxed space in the middle of the Pearl complex has found its ideal occupant: a classy, très belle French brasserie. The tall, airy room has style to spare and a long menu with all the requisite dishes, from pavé de saumon and mussels in white wine to a stately, polished-wood chariot de fromage that tempts diners with seldom-encountered French cheeses. Try this: Our lobster bisque arrived pink, piping hot, and redolent of sherry under a perfect puff-pastry dome. A mushroom tart was a study in earthy flavors in the most fragile of tart shells, accompanied by a very small frisée salad. Duck confit had a crisp skin and plenty of character but suffered the stringiness that often afflicts that hapless fowl. The broiled double lamb chops in bordelaise (sans the usual rakish leg bones) tasted fine but required considerable sawing. Pro tip: The restaurant is already popular, but you might be able to walk in for dinner before 6 p.m.
City: San Antonio